Comic by Matt Rushing, illustration by Kristi Siedow-Thompson
If you were to suggest that using new technology would save money ten years ago, you would be laughed out the room. Why? Technology used to be expensive (and often exclusive to large business) and complicated (requiring training), but now it’s the exact opposite. You can now integrate new technologies into your business process quite easily and raise your bottom line. Here are tips on how your small business can save money with technology:
- Switch to VoIP: Using tools like Skype can save your business from purchasing expensive phone packages and even improve productivity in your workforce.
- Virtual Meetings: Yes, a face to face conference is always more professional. However, the price to travel is very expensive to small business. Instead suggest the use of services like GoToWebinar that allow multiple users to share screens and hold meetings anywhere in the world (for a fraction of the cost of an airline ticket).
- Cut Back on Paper: It’s a process that will take time as many businesses rely heavily on paper documents for all their billing and payment needs (although this is no longer necessary). But anytime you can scan and store documents online (there are plenty of secure online storage options) you should! According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the average business employee uses (either directly or indirectly) 10,000 sheets of paper per year. With a sheet of paper running anywhere from 1-2 cents, that’s over $100 per employee.
- Work from Home: With today’s technology (some listed above) it’s very functional/economical for your employees to work from home (Watch this video from Jason Fried for some good reasons). If you have the ability to grant this privilege, give it a try to save on office space and energy.
- Notebooks over Desktop Computers: Instead of large and bulky desktop computers, try using notebook computers. Notebook computers today are just as powerful (some more so) as desktops, but use less energy. Not to mention your employees may be more productive with a mobile workstation.